How To Build A Shed Ramp

A motorcycle shed will protect your cycle and free up valuable space in your garage.

A motorcycle shed will protect your cycle and free up valuable space in your garage.

A ramp makes it easy to get big things into and out of your shed, as well as wheeled items like a lawnmower or a hand cart.

Or even a motorcycle?

Plus it’s safer because you are less likely to trip over the edge of the floor.

Ramps can be temporary or permanent. But a permanent ramps is more stable and more useful because it’s always be there when you need it.

This information is about building a permanent 4ft long ramp the width of your door opening. If you need something longer you can change the dimensions accordingly.

Pressure treated wood

All wood should be pressure treated because it will be close to or in contact with the ground. Pressure treated wood is chemically treated to be resistant to rotting and termites.

Materials list

A 4ft square ramp is very materials efficient. You will need

  • 1) 4×4 sheet pressure treated 3/4 inch plywood
  • 3) 2x4x8 pressure treated

If you want a larger ramp you will need

  • A ledger and an end board the width of the door
  • Enough ramp joists @ 16 inch O.C.
  • A sheet of plywood large enough to cover the ramp

You will also need a handful of 3 or 3 1/2 inch deck screws and some 2 inch deck screws. You want to use deck screws because they are coated to resist the elements.

Trim door, 2 options

shed-ramp-with-revealYou will need to trim the bottom of the door so it will close when the ramp is in place. You have 2 choices here. You can cut it…

– Flush with the floor and have no reveal
– 1/2 inch long which will give you a small reveal

A small reveal will let your door seal against the elements but will also make a small bump at the top where the ramp meets the floor.

Ledger

Measure and cut a 2×4 ledger the width of the door. You don’t need to make the ramp the full width of the door but that’s usually best. Cut the ramp end piece the same length.

Temporarily attach this ledger with 2 screws about 1 1/4 inches below floor level, or the final level of the ramp in case you want a reveal.

First joist

Cut a single ramp joist about x long. This is longer than necessary as the final length will depend on the height of the ramp and will be determined by trial and error.

Hold the joist approximately in place and mark where it touches the ground. Dig out till the top edge is about flush with ground level.

Joist angle

Hold the top end of the joist up to the outside edge of the ledger and mark the angle on the side of the joist. Cut this angle with a skill saw.

Joist length

Lay the plywood in place, top edge on the ledger and bottom edge on the ground. Hold the joist in place up to the bottom of the plywood and measure back 1 1/2 inches from the bottom edge of the plywood to allow for the end 2×4 and mark the joist.

This is the final length. Cut the other (3) joists to match this angle and length.

how-to-build-a-shed-ramp

Assemble frame

Remove ledger and mark it so the 4 joists are spaced about evenly. Transfer these layout marks to the end board and also to the top and bottom edges of the plywood.

Assemble this frame with 2 deck screws at the end of each joist.

Install frame

Excavate the lower end of the ramp so it rests about ground level.

Temporarily attach this frame with 2 screws and lay the plywood in place to check for proper height. Remove the plywood and permanently attach the ledger with a long screw on each side of the joists into the floor rim joist.

Install sheeting

Back fill the lower end of the frame. Lay the sheeting in place and attach with deck screws every 6 to 8 inches.

Paint?

old-wood-shed-rampThis ramp will be exposed to the weather for many years to come so you might want to paint it to extend it’s life and keep it looking fresh.

Alternatives

alternative-wood-shed-rampThere are many ways to build a shed ramp.

One alternative is to skip the ledger and end board and attach the ramp joists directly to the floor joist with metal hangers. This will save you a little time and excavation effort.

The down side is that the top and bottom edge of the sheeting will not be fully supported. But it will still work just fine.

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